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CAFA Law Blog Information, cases and insights regarding the Class Action Fairness Act of 2005

Batter Up! Case Note Discusses Interplay of CAFA and Supplemental Jurisdiction, Asking Who’s on First?

Posted in Legal Publications and Articles

Tim Sensing, Who’s On First?: The United States Supreme Court Takes A Swing At Interpreting The Ever-Elusive Language Of The § 1367 Supplemental Jurisdiction Statute In Exxon Mobil Corp. v. Allapattah Servs. Inc., 26 Miss. C. L. Rev. 321 (2007)

Just in time to get CAFA Law Blog readers warmed up for the Spring Training and the World Series (it’s only 10 months away), the Mississippi College Law Review recently published a baseball-themed case note analyzing Exxon Mobil Corp. v. Allapattah Services, Inc. (Editors’ Note:  See the CAFA Law Blog analysis of Exxon Mobil Corp. posted September 22, 2005.)

The note focuses on the United States Supreme Court’s interpretation of supplemental jurisdiction under 28 U.S.C. § 1367, in situations where complete diversity exists but one plaintiff’s claims do not meet the $75,000 amount in controversy requirement. In Exxon Mobil, the Court decided that federal courts can exercise supplemental jurisdiction over such plaintiffs. The Court did not say much about CAFA–giving it only a passing mention near the end of the opinion.

This case note explores the class action field a bit more in the text at footnote 228. Mr. Sensing suggests the result of the Exxon Mobil Court’s decision in the context of class action litigation gives plaintiffs more options to manipulate their claims to fit into one of the statutes providing federal jurisdiction, leading to ever-increasing case loads in federal courts. It is an interesting point. We are not sure it is interesting enough to get the legislative attention Mr. Sensing calls for, but you never know what could happen in an election year!